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Turning on and off the light switches

My son likes to turn on and off the light switches, a million times a day. Why does he do this and how can I make him stop?

My Opinion:


Nice typical 2yo trait. But I will tell my son "stay out of the kitchen" and he will put his foot on the line between the tile and the carpet, then look at me. I will say "no" and he will edge his foot over the line just a little. This is actually a good thing, a developmental stage that all kids have to go thru usually at 2yo but AS kids are generally later, that they are not actually required to do what they are told, but they have control over their actions. Then you have to teach them obedience etc. But your son could be doing light switches for this reason. Do you notice that he is watching you with that devious look on his face? If so, then your usual punishment, time-out or whatever you use, would be appropriate.


Why should he play with his cause and effect toys when you don't?? Kids like to imitate. Right now my 2yo daughter likes to open and close the lower cabinet doors, open and close, open and close, etc, etc, etc. This is a typical imitative behavior, most 2yo kids like to do this, because they see you do it. She also "helps" me unload the dishwasher, put clothes in the washer/dryer, etc. So maybe your son is imitating you with the light switches. If so, maybe you can make it a game. My AS son went thru the light switch phase, but now that I can watch the kilowatt hours rack up at $400 per each, I had to figure out how to get him to stop. So we made it a game. I have a long, L-shape hallway with a switch at each end. He would stand at one end and either I or my #1 son would stand at the other. #2 would turn light on, #1 would turn it off, on and off, etc. Very fun, they would both laugh when they would do it very fast or even at the same time etc. But after a few minutes I would say "okay all done", then we would stop for awhile, then I would let them do it again. After a week or so of this "game", I would let #2 turn on the light in the evening, and then I made him responsible for turning on the porch light too. So now it is a "chore" LOL, he does it every evening. He does not play the game any more except maybe once in a while, which is nicer for my wallet. This idea may help you too.


Lights on and off hurt my eyes, but your son might enjoy the feeling of his eyes adjusting to the bright and dark, or it may look interesting, several AS adults I know can see colors and auras and such. You might consider buying your son his own personal flashlight he can use for lighting effects, that may save you your electric bill and sanity. It may also give you a clue as to why he likes turning on/off your lights, if he shines the flashlight on walls and things vs shining it directly into his eyes, etc.


If your son does this because the "click" sound or the feel of the switch is fun, you can try changing the switch. When I bought my current house, it had the standard switches which look like a little handle sticking out of a switchplate. We also had standard round door knobs, which we replaced with the long ones which you push up/down to open. But I have hand/finger issues, so we replaced all the light switches with the kind that look like rockers, you push the top for "on" and the bottom for "off". They make a different noise and have a different feel than the regular type of switch. You can also buy round ones, you turn one way or the other for on and off, or some you push in for on and push in again for off. The difference may make your son not interested in them any more.


If other things are not working and this behavior is driving you absolutely nuts and you just can't wait until he grows out of it, you can remove the light from his "favorite" room to do this, then when he turns it on, nothing happens. He will get tired of it eventually and find something else to do. This may not work tho, if he does not care which switch he uses, unless you enjoy living in a dark house.

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